Dear Friend,

I'm excited to celebrate my birthday this year with you. While it does mean that I'm getting a year older, the good news is that so is GEMS!

In fact, this year is our 15 year anniversary and I couldn't be prouder of the impact we've had over the years, both in the movement and especially in the lives of our girls and young women.

I started GEMS at the age of 23 on my kitchen table with $30 and a borrowed computer. I didn't have much to offer back then; girls slept on my couch and borrowed my clothes but what I was able to offer was someone to listen and support them, someone to love them and someone to advocate for them and empower them to see a different future for themselves. Fifteen years later as I celebrate my 38th birthday, GEMS is now serving over 350 girls and young women each year through multiple programs including housing (no more sleeping on couches!), crisis care, counseling, court advocacy, educational support, employment, youth development and youth leadership programming. And throughout our tremendous growth, we've kept the same spirit and heart that GEMS was founded on 15 years ago -- love, support, and empowering girls and young women to see and achieve a different future.

Of course, we couldn't do any of the work we do without your support. With this in mind, I hope you'll help me celebrate my birthday this year by donating to GEMS. Please check out my personal fundraising page to help me reach my goal of $10,000 to celebrate my 38th birthday. Together we can support our girls and young women and celebrate all of their successes and achievements.

That's the best gift I could ask for!

Warmly,
Rachel Lloyd
Founder & CEO



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